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Printable Quote: Summertime

We hope you are all enjoying the sunshine and warm weather of sweet, sweet summertime! The feelings that summer bring out should be shared, so we wanted to create this printable, and framable summer quote for you. Hang it on your wall, at your desk, or give to a friend. Enjoy!

07222015_Summertime_living_Printable_BLG_BMA Click here to download, print, and frame

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Celebrate National Sisters Day on August 2

Sisters share an unbreakable bond, and did you know that there is a special day just for celebrating what that bond means?!? August 2 is National Sisters Day – a day to spend with your sisters, or even friends who are like sisters to you. We created this special postcard just to help you celebrate. Click here to view, send, and share. Happy Sisters Day!

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Birthday Surprise: Celebrating 70!

 

70_birthday_partyIntroBirthdays are meant to be celebrated. And milestone birthdays are even more special. One of our extremely talented Art Directors, Alison, has a knack for party planning, and she does a pretty amazing job. This past Spring, Alison’s mother was turning 70, and she knew she wanted to celebrate in a really special way. We had to share how everything turned out, so here’s Alison with the details….

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My mom was turning 70 this year and I didn’t want another birthday, especially a milestone, to go by without an unforgettable celebration. What better way to honor someone than to throw a surprise birthday party?

So back in February, my brother and I started planning. We wanted to invite as many people as possible–friends, family, classmates, and co-workers. I designed the invitation around her stunning engagement picture, my favorite photo of her.

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I wanted the colors to be classy and fun. Gold, black, pinks and polka-dots to represent the 50’s era my mom grew up in. I turned black paper fans into records, using song titles that went with my mom’s name, Sharron, like “My Sharona” and “Sherry Baby”. To continue the theme, I used records as table centerpiece mats as well.

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Each centerpiece was a gold Mason jar that contained  a Happy Birthday tag, black paper fans with her picture, gold flags with “70”cut outs, and black or pink polka-dot balloons and flowers. Flowers were incorporated into everything. I made pom-pom flowers, cupcake liner flowers, and small and large tissue paper flowers.  Each table featured different titles for her—“mom,” “daughter,” “sister,” “wife,” “grandma” and “friend.”

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Ah…the cake!  I continued with the flowers and created a topper for it that said, “70 Years Loved.”  I also served polka-dot cookies with gold “70” and black “S” for “Sharron,” that people could take home with them.

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As you can see from my mom’s expression, we got her!  She was beyond surprised. Hugs went on forever and everyone had a great time. Best gift of the evening: as my mom hugged me she told me, “It’s an honor to be your mom.”

All the planning, stress, and flower making…totally worth it.    Happy Birthday, Mom!

Click here to see more pictures from the party.
All Photos Courtesy of Kelly Kutsko
Cookies by Chris Carolin
Cake by Kelsey Elizabeth Cakes

 

 

 

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Summer Craft Roundup: Planning a Crafternoon

It’s summer. You’ve got some extra time on your hands. And you’d love to plan a crafternoon.

“What exactly is a ‘crafternoon’?” you may be wondering if you’ve never heard the term before. Simply put, it’s an afternoon solely devoted to the joy of crafting.

In other words, it’s a time to relax, have fun, and let your creative juices flow!

This summer, take respite from the heat and activity-filled zaniness to enjoy a lazy afternoon with one of these easy-to-make home and garden décor craft projects. (Lemonade or iced tea optional—but highly recommended!)

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1. DIY Outdoor Pillows via Meet the B’s
2.  Garden Markers via Wit & Whistle
3. Drink Covers via Martha Stewart
4. Driftwood Seahorse via Creative in Chicago
5. Simple Summer Totebag via Crafting Chicks
6. Mason Jar Tiki Torches via The Frugal Homemaker

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Summer Gardening

Gardens—of any and all kinds—bring both joy and tranquility to those who cultivate and grow them. Whether it’s a flower garden, a vegetable garden, an herb garden, or a purely whimsical garden, it’s a place that becomes your haven. Your sanctuary. Your masterpiece.

Of course, gardens take time and patience. You need to plan, plant, water, and weed. But you also get to enjoy every moment, watching them grow into the magnificent fruits of your labor.

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1. Vegetable Garden: Juneau Empire
2. Whimsical Garden: Gardening Gone Wild
3. Herb Garden: Persephone Magazine
4. Vegetable Garden: LLH Designs
5. Flower Garden: Architecture Art Designs
6. Herb Garden: Not Just a Housewife

 

Blue Mountain certainly appreciates the significance of lovely gardens to our readers. That’s why we love to create beautiful eCards that specifically feature a garden theme. Click here to see some enchanting examples—and then be sure to send one to someone special today. Summer gardening is one of the best ways to brighten up any ones yard.

If you already have a garden growing right now, wonderful! If not, we’d love to offer some creative examples of unique gardens you may want to consider growing yourself. Or at least to “oooh” and “aaah” over.

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July 2015 Desktop Background & Letter from the Editor

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Life is like everything else—we get out of it what we put into it.  You can wait for an adventure to come knocking at your door, or you can go out and make one happen.

When was the last time you did something for the first time?  It doesn’t have to be base jumping or highlining, it can be as simple as taking a dance lesson, attending a music festival, joining a hiking group or embarking on a road trip.  Children have an innate sense of adventure, so pack a picnic and invite your kids and grandkids, or borrow someone else’s, and go exploring.   Now is the new never.

Summer is a great time for making new memories and revisiting old ones.  Are there elements you could add to your décor that evoke happy recollections, like wildflowers in mason jars, bowls of seashells and sea glass, wind chimes and Japanese lanterns?  Are there summertime drinks that remind you of home, like sweet tea or sangria or root beer floats?  Maybe you could you return to a favorite family vacation spot or theme park.  The Fourth of July is a perfect time to revive some childhood traditions.

On July 4th we commemorate the day in 1776 when our Declaration of Independence was signed and our freedom declared—a freedom that we continue to cherish and protect.  Parades, picnics, BBQ’s, sparklers and fireworks are all part of the fun.  And while you’re celebrating our nation’s birthday, remember all your family and friends who are celebrating theirs this summer, by sending them Blue Mountain Birthday eCards. 

We also have a brand new, beautiful desktop background for your computer phone, and even your Facebook cover image.

July Background:
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2560 x 1440 / 1680 x 1050 / 1440 x 900 / 1280 x 800Facebook Cover Photo / Phone
For help on how to install, click here.

Go 4th and have fun!

Caroline Martlew, Senior Editor
Caroline

 

 

 

 

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Father’s Day Coloring Pages

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Let Dad brag about the little artist in his life! Father’s Day coloring pages are the perfect keepsake for Dad or Grandpa, that lets kids exercise their creativity and give him something from the heart. Simply print out a page to color and personalize…that’s it!

Our Father’s Day printables make a sweet, thoughtful gift idea for kids who want to honor Dad or Grandpa on his special day. After coloring in images designed to make Dad smile, proud papas can display their children’s art on the refrigerator, in the garage, or on their desk at work.

With a little help from parents, siblings, and (of course) Blue Mountain, each Father’s Day coloring pages can be personalized with your own words to Dad. Show and tell him how much he means to you this Father’s Day with a colorful corner of your heart printed out to share with the #1 Dad in your life.

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Mothers Day Kids Coloring Pages

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We’re so happy to share a little something new with you for this Mother’s Day! Whether you’re looking for something creative to do with your kids or grand kids, or you’re just a kid-at-heart, you’ll love these new Mothers Day Kids Coloring Pages!

Children can sit down with a parent, grandparent, or sibling to select coloring pages to print and present to Mom or Grandma on her special day. Blue Mountain offers a variety of Mother’s Day coloring pages online. Color a brilliant bunch of Mother’s Day flowers for Mom, or let her know she’s #1 – not just on Mother’s Day, but every day.

Printable Mother’s Day Coloring sheets give kids the freedom to color outside the lines, and add their own special poem or words to Mom or Grandma, too. Include a thoughtful message from the heart and you’ll be good to go!

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Letter from the Editor May 2015

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New month, new day, new dreams–it does seem like anything is possible in May.  In a whirlwind of spring cleaning, we’ve put away our winter things—sweaters, boots and ice scrapers and we’ve begun mowing, mulching and weeding.  It won’t be long before we’re barefoot in the grass again.  We’re shaking out our welcome mats and looking forward to entertaining our family and friends on the warm and sunny days ahead.

May is filled with reasons to celebrate!  Bookending the month, we have Nurses week at the beginning (where would we be without them?)  and Memorial Day on the 25th, when we honor and remember those who have served our country.

On May 10th, we celebrate all the great moms in our lives on Mother’s Day.  Here at Blue Mountain, we’ve been creating some wonderful new cards especially for her.  Inspired by beautiful Boston Public Garden, we imagined a scene from the turn of the century with the swan boats drifting on the lagoon to the music of a string quartet along the bank, playing Minuet in G.  Our favorite collage artist has created a stunning new design, incorporating warm and loving wishes for Mom. And you’ll be happy to hear, we’ve designed a new Mother’s Day card, featuring Pharrell Williams’ song, “Happy.”  If you’re a Talking Card fan, you’ll enjoy our new glam dog at the spa, “Paws and Relax.”

Happy May and Happy Mother’s Day!
Caroline Martlew, Senior Editor

Caroline

 

 

 

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What to Write in a Thank You Note

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“THANK YOU.”  Most everyone says this daily and it feels perfectly natural to say it.
But for special situations, when we want to put our gratitude in print, it’s different and, sometimes, even difficult. So once you’ve got a great card or some nice stationery, what comes next in thanking someone for a gift, an interview, a thoughtful gesture? Perhaps
the tips below can help you write a thank you note that’s not only sincere, but appropriate as well.

Handwritten Thank You Note

First, know that a handwritten thank you note is always appreciated. With email being such a common form of communication, personal notes are more valued than ever. And taking the time to acknowledge someone’s kindness or time will mean the world to them. Simply the fact that you’re writing a note sets you up for success.

Be Timely

Next, try to be timely. A thank you note is best sent within a week. For a large event, like
a shower or wedding, up to three months is acceptable, but “sooner” is preferred than “later.”  If time gets away from you, just offer a humble apology, but don’t dwell on your delay. The note shouldn’t sound like it was a burden to write.

For more formal or business thank yous, such as after an interview, a thank you email can be sent immediately if there is a sense of urgency (say in placing an order or filling a position,) but it should still be followed up with a thank you note or letter sent shortly after the event–within 2 to 3 days. (See links below for more information.)

A few ideas for business thank yous…

  • I’m so happy you recommended our company to one of your friends…many thanks for your thoughtfulness. 
  • Or: We were so happy with your____________, we just wanted you to know we’ll recommend you to all our friends.
  • Thank you for the time you spent showing me…
  • Thank you for showing us what “above and beyond” really means…
  • I know your time is valuable, so I just wanted to thank you for making room in your schedule for me.

Be Yourself and Be Specific

Now, just be yourself…but be specific. Address the recipient in the way that’s comfortable for both of you, and then focus on your reason for writing. There’s no need for a long lead-in as you might do in a letter. Let the recipient know right away what you’re thanking them for, and describe it thoughtfully. Saying the gift is incredibly useful, the dinner was delicious, or their act of kindness was enormously helpful are personal touches that mean
a lot.

Add Some Details

Don’t hesitate to add more details to genuinely express your gratitude. For example, if you’ll think of the gift giver whenever you use their present, tell them so. If you felt the dinner guests were a great group of people, let the host know it. If thinking about what someone did still makes you smile, that’s something they’d like to know. Elaborating on the reasons for your gratitude helps people see themselves positively from your point of view—and doubles the joy of the gesture.

End With a Compliment

Finally, finish the note with a sincere compliment that will leave a lasting effect. Whether they’re a one-of-a-kind wonderful friend, an amazing cook, a prospective employer, or you appreciate the time they took out of their busy schedule, now is the time to tell them you noticed—and it will make them feel extra special.

Remember, the thank you note itself, although expected, can often be a pleasant surprise. And everyone wants to feel appreciated. So, the few minutes you take to tell someone you’re thankful could brighten their whole day…and yours!

A few ideas for social thank yous…

  • You always know the perfect thing to (do, say, give, etc.)
  • Your kindess during a difficult time was sincerely appreciated.
  • I feel doubly blessed…first for what you did, but mostly, for what
    you mean to me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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